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All About Literary Techniques and How to Easily Identify Them

All About Literary Techniques and How to Easily Identify Them
October 17, 2019
Author : Bill

Literature is a beautiful subject that contains the essence of our heritage and interwoven with the happenings of the present and it sometimes predicts the future. In the words of EDWARD COUNSEL, “ All literature is but a word--a thought--a maxim amplified.” Either a writer, a student or a reader, for interpreting, understanding and analyzing any piece of art it is essential to have a strong grip of the literary devices infused in it. Yes we know sometimes these similar-sounding rhetoric devices like Oxymoron and Onomatopoeia, Anthropomorphism and Euphemism, etc., can create confusion in the creative brains. We are here to help out those university scholars who are doing mastery in English Literature and searching out for expert assistance in understanding those complex literary terms and their definitions.

What are Literary Techniques or Rhetorical Devices?

Before digging deep into the definition of literary terms, it is first advised to understand what the term literary devices mean. To have a crystal clear picture of the scenario, you can scroll down and read further. “Literary devices are the techniques that writers infuse in their piece of art to create a special effect of their writing in the mind of readers. These artistries are used to emphasize writings and convey the message in an effective way”

Why literary devices are used in writing?

I am sure, being a student these devices must frustrate you at times. And you think of why these literary techniques create puzzlement in my mind? And why they are used in writings? Our experts say that the moment you are well-versed of these Literary Techniques you won’t feel it puzzling your mind. These terms are used to make you reading interesting. Through the infographic given below, you will have a clear picture of your ‘WHY’?

Why is it important to know these literary or rhetoric devices?

Having a good understanding of these terms will not only help you in scoring HD grades in your assignments but there are multiple other benefits too.
  • You can understand the motivation and idea behind the author’s choice if you are familiar with different literary devices.
  • You can clearly understand the meaning and purpose of a writer’s work.
  • Understanding these terms make will make reading more interesting and fun.
Now that you have understood why knowing these literary devices are so important for a literature student, let’s move forward towards knowing the definitions of the most commonly used literary terms.

List of the most commonly used Literary Devices

  • Allegory - Prose, poetry or even the entire book, novel, play, etc. can be written by using allegory. It is a figure of speech which describes abstract ideas or principles through characters, figures, and events. For example, The story of Icarus: Icarus fashions wings for himself out of wax, but when he flies too close to the sun his wings melt. This story is a message about the dangers of reaching beyond our powers.
  • Alliteration - Alliteration is the figure of speech, were words sounding the same are used in the same sentence. It is also created when all the words in the sentence begin with the same letter. For example, Betty Botter bought some butter, "But," she said, "the butter's bitter.
  • Anthropomorphism - Anthropomorphism is the act of giving human quality, emotion or ambition to non-human objects such as animals or places. For example, In kids cartoon-like Oggy and the Cockroaches, the cockroaches can sing, dance, speak, eat, etc., but the real cockroaches can’t.
  • Colloquialism - Colloquialism is the use of informal words, language or slangs. It is used by the author to create a sense of realism in their character or writings. For example - “Hey! How’s You?”, “Hi! What’s up?” etc.
  • Epigraph - An epigraph is a piece of a quote, song, dialogue or a short paragraph that the writer adds at the beginning of a large piece of writing which can be a novel, poem, play, etc. For example - Mistah Kurtz-he dead, A penny for the Old Guy. Is the epigraph used by poet T. S. Eliot, in his poem “The Hollow Men.”
  • Euphemism - Euphemism is a literary device where the idea is conveyed by using indirect or mild terms in the phrase, instead of using harsh, vulgar, or blunt words. For example - When you have to say some is dead, you can use passed away instead of died.
  • Flashback - Flashback is used when the previous event comes up in the present scene. Especially to develop big suspense before revealing some incident. It is also used to give more detailed information about the background or a specific character. For example - In the first part of Gone Girl there is a flashback in every chapter.
  • Hyperbole - Hyperbole is an exaggerated description of an incident or a statement that should not be taken literally by the readers. This term is majorly used to add comedic effects or to add more emphasis.
  • Imagery - Imagery is used when the writer describes the scene so well that it appeals to all your senses. It helps the reader to visualize the whole parts of the story by framing a strong mental picture. For example - “When all at once I saw a crowd, A host, of golden daffodils; Beside the lake, beneath the trees, Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.” These lines are taken from the poem “I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud,” written by William Wordsworth.
  • Irony - Irony is used to express the idea by emphasizing its opposite meaning. For example, “Oh great! Now you have broken my new glasses.”
  • Metaphor - Metaphor is used when an author describes things, events, incidents or ideas by comparing it with each other. The two things that are compared usually share something in common but are different in all other respects. For example - “Joy was a lion on the battlefield,” “Camel is the ship of the desert.”
  • Simile - By using a simile resemblance between two different things is shown by terms ‘as’ or ‘like’. For example, “He is like a rat mouse in front of his mother”, “Her cheeks are as red as red roses.” etc.
  • Symbolism - Symbolism is a figure of speech that is used to give special meaning to an idea by using symbols. The things used for symbolism are called ‘symbols’. For example - The team ‘A new dawn’, does not only used to show the beginning of a new day but also used to refer a new start of something.
  • Onomatopoeia - Onomatopoeia is used when we have to describe something with the help of sound that it makes. For example - Bizz, buzz, boom, click, tick-tick, etc.
  • Oxymoron - It is used to highlight two different ides or concepts by comparing and contrasting them through texts. For example - "Parting is such sweet sorrow.” — Romeo and Juliet by Shakespeare.
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Need assistance in writing your English Literature Assignment?

Sometimes is becomes difficult to understand literature because of the complex literary devices used in it. University scholars pursuing English Literature as their academic course must be well-versed with these literary terms complete the assignments. Even after having knowledge of these terms students get stuck in completing their assignments due to lack of time and skills of crafting the piece of art. Hence they need help from expert assignment writers. At My Assignment Services, we render top-notch English Literature Assignment Writing Help services at pocket-friendly prices to the students in Australia.

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About the Author



Bill is an academic expert in the fields of law, nursing, business, and management. His diligence in editing and writing assignments solutions has been applauded by students from around the globe; who swear by his eclectic writing style and subject matter expertise in Law and Nursing Studies. He is full time associated with My Assignment Services as a Senior Academic Writer and loves binge-watching on anything sci-fi.


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2023-03-31 11:21:11
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